Website+Blog+Search Engine Optimization+Social Media+Email=Business Growth from Digital Marketing
Does that equation surprise you? Of course, it is a gross simplification. But it illustrates a point. When I speak with other small business owners like myself, I hear them talk about a website and social media posts, but a blog and email marketing are usually missing ingredients.
Search Engine Optimization(SEO) is also usually missing, but you may be able to rely on your website platform (e.g., Wix, WordPress) or web designer to assist with some basic techniques. However, depending on your website provider, they may not counsel you on the importance of content. A blog is a key way to deliver content that drives business growth from online, digital marketing.
Why Should You Care About a Blog?
In 2015 search engines such as Google are focused on creating the best possible user experience. They are continuing to increase their analysis of your web site to ensure it has the information your target audience needs. This and other factors drive your ranking in search results. If the keywords and content being searched for are not well represented and highlighted to search engines in they way they expect, your target audience may not find you online. (Or maybe you will spend a lot of money on ads.)
There is more to SEO than content that can be delivered via a blog. But a key component is content written in the language of your target customer and that hits their keywords for searching.
There are other reasons besides search engine ranking for why you should seriously consider a blog with your web site:
- Establish your brand
- Differentiate from competitors
- Demonstrate expertise
- Build an audience of potential and existing customers, partners, and vendors
- Make your company more personal
- Control your content as social media networks continue to change
- Provide customer support for common questions
- Collect email addresses
Let me emphasize that last one again – collect email addresses. In these days of social media marketing the data show that email marketing is still more effective for actually getting someone to buy your goods or services. Providing interesting, expert content and getting people to subscribe with their email address is even more effective in driving business results than all your posts on social media.
A McKinsey study found that e-mail is nearly 40 times more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined for acquiring customers. A Gallup survey found that 62% of consumers say that social media has no impact on purchase decisions. 90% of U.S. consumers use email daily. Also, the average order value driven by email is 17% higher than purchases that are attributed to social media.
I know you’re thinking:
- Wait! I’m a small business owner, not a blogger!
- I don’t have time for that!
- I’m not a good writer!
- How often would I do this and would I run out of ideas?
There are resources that can help and that don’t cost too much:
- Blogs on best practices for writing a blog post
- Google keyword planner for most searched keywords related to your business and geography
- Online tips on where to find ideas for blog posts
- Freelance writers and writing services that can research and write a blog post for $10-15 depending on the number of words
- Marketing consultants and agencies that can assist to generate ideas and produce content on your behalf
Do you have a company blog? What tools and techniques have been helpful? What results have you seen?